Hanauma Bay is located on the east side of the island, within what is undoubtedly the most beautiful and scenic part of Oahu. Let Snorkelfest take care of getting you there with everything you need for a great day of snorkeling so you can relax, enjoy the scenery and not have to worry about a thing.
The shallow waters and abundance of fish have earned it the reputation of being the epitome of the Hawaiian experience. Tourists and locals alike frequent the beautiful and famous nature preserve year-round. Being prepared with good sunblock, hydration, and some familiarity with the Bay itself helps enhance your snorkeling excursion experience and helps you avoid any potential downside. Please take the time to look through this page and get to know Hanauma before making the trip.
If you do decide to add this Hanauma Bay snorkeling adventure to your itinerary, our friendly, knowledgeable staff can help you get the most out of your day by providing door-to-door service and clean, sanitary equipment at a great value.
What To Bring?
You will need to bring your own towel, swimwear, and the park entrance fee.
Some optional items you may also like to have with you include: Snacks and drinks (may be brought with you or purchased at the entrance to the park), extra sunscreen, a camera, and extra spending money. There are small lockers located on the beach level for a fee (manned – not coin-operated) to hold your valuables, but we recommend that you travel light. You will want to spend most of your time in the water, so it is better not to have to haul many items up and down from the beach or have to worry about them while you are snorkeling.
At the time of this website’s last update, the admission cost is $7.50 per person, no charge for children 12 and under and active duty military.
Snorkel gear can be rented at the beach level for $20. For those visitors that reach the bay on their own and need to rent masks, snorkels, and fins, try to arrive as early as possible since long lines at the rental window are very common. Please be advised that even if you buy a tour package, admission is never included in the package and must be paid separately at the park’s entrance.
Days and Hours of Operation
Hanauma Bay is open every day year-round except Tuesdays, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.
The Bay is very accessible to swimmers of all skill levels. Much of the Bay is shallow, but there are deeper areas and sudden drop-offs. It is possible to get slightly disoriented. For this reason, it is always better to snorkel in pairs. Children should never be left unsupervised.
Do not step on the coral (there are no “rocks” in the water, everything that is not sand is coral). The coral and everything “attached” to it is either alive or has an organic component. If you accidentally scrape or cut yourself make sure that you wash and disinfect the injury thoroughly to prevent infection. As you get closer to the “edge” of the coral reef that protects the beach there may be strong currents or wave surges, there are plenty of Park Rangers, volunteers, and lifeguards that know the Bay and will be able to advise you regarding any area that you might want to explore.
Most of the fish in the bay are tame and used to human presence but do not touch, disturb, or try to feed the marine life. A green turtle for example, can deliver a powerful bite but it will not bother you if left undisturbed, remember that you are a spectator and should behave as such.
Do not hesitate to ask for information.
That is why they are there in the first place. Most of the staff are either volunteers or have requested to be transferred to this location and are passionate about the Bay.
How Long To Stay?
You will need time to watch a mandatory instructional video before entering the beach area and it takes a few minutes each way to travel from the visitor center to the beach.
The fish are in a high concentration, less than 10 feet offshore, so if you get in the water right away the approximately two and a half hour time frame allocated by our shuttle service should allow plenty of time for full enjoyment of the Bay and sea life without over-exhaustion. There is little shade on the beach itself and beach tents are prohibited, beach umbrellas are allowed, but can be difficult to anchor. For this reason it is advisable to avoid overstaying your time at the beach. For those that choose not to negotiate the pathway from the visitor center to the water there is a trolley that will take you up and down the path for a small fee.
Hanauma Bay is a Nature Preserve NOT a beach park, therefore, many beach park activities are prohibited such as shell collecting and boating. You will be advised that walking on the coral is also prohibited as the coral itself is part of the nature being preserved.